What is an Explorer Yacht ?


With more and more yacht builders designing and building “Explorer Yachts” it is wise to consider what really is an “Explorer Yacht” when navigating the market in search of an Explorer Yacht for Sale.

In general, an explorer yacht is built for a longer range of a minimum 5,000 nm, capable of handling extreme sea conditions of wind and waves, in culmination with the ability to carry larger tenders and toys in comparison to yachts in the same size range.

The requirement for long range therefore generally requires an explorer yacht to have much larger fuel tanks, smaller engines and much lower fuel consumption. The ability to handle rough sea conditions generally requires a displacement hull form and a hull built of steel.

To be operational for long periods many miles from home (no use trying to cross the Atlantic with an empty freezer) requires considerable storage capacity and a corresponding high volume or Gross Tonnage compared to the overall length of the yacht. Crew areas must be designed to take into account many months at sea.

Reliability and independence are vital factors in an explorer yacht: this means large and easy to access engine rooms, over -engineered and accessible systems and technical spaces to ensure that the vessel can be kept running at all times.


The sturdiness and seaworthiness required to take on all seas requires design characteristics that allow the vessel to be able to take on rough seas. So design considerations to look out for when looking at Explorer yachts for sale may include bigger freeing ports on the foredeck (to allow water to escape quickly), reverse sheer windows (allowing greater visibility, stronger, less vulnerable glass) a Portuguese bridge (to protect the pilot house and also crew access to the forward areas of the yacht), with wide side decks and high gunwales to allow safe movement around the vessel in all conditions.

Indeed, it could be said that the “explorer yacht”, far from being a separate specialised category of Superyacht is in fact the ideal cruising Superyacht.